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  • Lithium Americas (LAC) has completed a transaction with Ganfeng Lithium, relating to their joint venture company, Minera Exar SA
  • Under the transaction, Ganfeng increased its interest in Minera to 51 per cent, in exchange for approximately C$20.9 million
  • Lithium Americas also received approximately $52.4 million, from the proceeds of a non-interest-bearing loan from Ganfeng
  • The company has reaffirmed its commitment to safety at the Caucharí-Olaroz project, where workers previously tested positive for COVID-19
  • Lithium Americas (LAC) is up 5.60 per cent and is currently trading at $9.61 per share

Lithium Americas (LAC) has completed a transaction with Ganfeng Lithium, relating to their joint venture company, Minera Exar SA.

Minera owns 100 per cent of the Caucharí-Olaroz lithium project, located in the Argentinian province of Jujuy. 

Under the transaction, Ganfeng subscribed for new shares in Minera, increasing its interest in the JV company. In exchange for approximately C$20.9 million, Ganfeng raised its interest in Minera from 50 per cent to 51 per cent. 

The remaining 49 per cent interest in Minera, (and by extension, Caucharí-Olaroz) still belongs to Lithium Americas. In addition to the $20.9 million payout, Lithium Americas also received approximately $52.4 million in cash from proceeds of a non-interest-bearing loan from Ganfeng. 

Lithium Americas’ President and CEO, Jon Evans, said the transaction with Ganfeng Lithium will strengthen the company’s long-term partnership in Argentina. This will be particularly important as the companies work together to bring Caucharí-Olaroz into production.

“With an additional US$40 million [approximately C$52.4 million] in cash on our balance sheet and over US$200 million [approximately C$262.1 million] in available capital to fund our share of Caucharí-Olaroz, Lithium Americas remains in a strong financial position as we advance both of our projects.

“Caucharí-Olaroz is approximately 50 per cent complete, and represents one of the few large-scale lithium operations currently in development globally.

“We are coordinating closely with the Province of Jujuy to ensure we operate responsibly and safely as we gradually restart construction activities. The health and safety of our workers and the communities close to the project is our top priority,” he said. 

This commitment to safety is especially necessary, as Argentina continues to suffer heavy losses at the hands of the COVID-19 pandemic. In early July, Lithium Americas had to temporarily suspend construction at the Caucharí-Olaroz site, due to two workers testing positive for COVID-19.

When the company reported the two cases onsite, the surrounding province of Jujuy had reported a little over 230 confirmed cases, and six deaths. Nearly two months later, and the province has now reported over 7,000 confirmed COVID-19 cases, and 207 deaths.

Lithium Americas (LAC) is up 5.60 per cent and is trading at $9.61 per share at 10:33am EDT.

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